• Kalei Edenfield

Where Are They Now? Intern edition!

December 11, 2018 | Kalei Edenfield

Here at the Athens CASA/GAL Program, we have the best interns!

This week we wanted to check in with one of our absolute favorites and see how things are going post-graduation and internship. Hallie Poor, was a 2016-2017 Social Work intern. She spent countless hours scanning documents, attending court hearings, meeting and learning from families in Athens County and making us laugh!

Learn more about her below:

Why did you want to do your internship with the Athens CASA/GAL Program?

I was immediately drawn to this program. For one, I recognized it from many campus/social work events and was curious to learn more, and two, I really was impressed and in awe of the work they were doing in the community. It seemed like such a small staff of capable, intelligent, and passionate women were really making large waves in the community by giving voices to children who often did not have anyone in their corner. I wanted to learn from them and be a part of it as much as I could.

Where do you currently work/and do at that job?

I am a licensed social worker and right now I am doing comprehensive medical case management through Equitas Health in Akron, Ohio. I have been at this agency for a little over a year. We work with clients who are HIV+, and specifically have a focus on the LGBTQ+ and other vulnerable communities that need access to quality, inclusive, and compassionate health care.

What was your favorite part about the internship?

I really can't pick one single favorite part of my internship experience, but I'll narrow it down. I loved the variety of perspectives and responsibilities the internship had to offer. I was able to sit in on, and later participate in, team meetings at ACCS, I met with teachers, parents, and foster parents, and I was able to observe court hearings. I visited foster homes, residential facilities, and schools all over Athens County and sometimes even farther. I helped to write and co-write court reports after interviewing children and their family members. I was taken seriously by the CASA team as a young (but definitely learning) professional.

The part of CASA that I also loved was that the support and encouragement from the staff was overwhelming. We spent time processing together and I was always comfortable sharing my concerns, my confusion, or my frustration with them. I never felt dumb when asking a question, and I always felt a part of the team. The experiences, both during and outside of work, that I had with the CASA team were some of my most formative times of my college career and adult life.

What is your superpower?

I like to think my superpower is that I can get people excited about (almost) anything. I can be compelling and persuasive because often I am trying to hype myself up at the same time (for instance, when my coworkers and I are lacking motivation at the office). I think it comes in handy sometimes at work with coworkers, when building rapport/setting goals with clients, or just in general trying to convince my family or friends that something will be a GREAT idea (how do you think my family got my dog, Eli?)

Something cool I've done:

March, 2018 giving a baby elephant a bath at a rescue and rehabilitation farm outside Chiang Mai, Thailand.

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